Saturday, July 17, 2010

Life in the Chicken Coop

or maybe this should be called the chicken castle or perhaps Trump Chicken 'cause the chicken coop project has taken many more hours and dollars that anticipated and has turned into one big structure. (Of course one should probably consider these things before running out and purchasing EIGHT chickens!!)

My husband is never one to do things half way. New hobby? He'll find every message board that supports said hobby, find complete strangers to talk to about said hobby, expend time, money, and energy into said hobby, and basically eat and breathe said hobby.

New chickens? Same rules.

He's now the master of all of the new chicken message boards, has downloaded numerous chicken coop designs, and has poured over every detail of how much space is needed for said chickens, how much ventilation is required in said coop (who knew this was an important detail), where the food should go, the water, how much water, how about kind of soil they poop in...goodness, that must be important!

Sometimes all these little details and his obsession over knowing all of them make my little head spin...

But you know what...

I love that about him...

I love that he finds ways to truly understand what's needed and required because if it was left up to me those poor poultry vittles would have been sheltering in a cardboard box with a few holes punched in the lid!

That said, I'm behind in posting details about our sweet chicks so these photos were taken from a few weeks ago. The coop is actually now just about complete and the girls have made a nice home in their These photos are from the first few days that we took them out in the yard to let them play in their new run. Yes, yes, chickens need playdates too!

Here they are first thing in the morning...You should see them when you let 'em lose in the yard. They just about lose their chicken heads...oh, maybe that's not a good visual. They love being outside and did you know that chickens eat all kinds of bugs? They're great for eating ticks, mosquitos, etc. I wonder how they'd do with a NY cockroach? Ehh...they wouldn't stand a chance, those babies can strip a car in under three minutes.

This is Peck (have I told you the name of our chickens? Let's see...There's Brownie (she's the chicken who thinks she's a dog....that's for another post), Peck, Blackie, Chickie-Egg (our youngest named that one), Parmesan, Catchatori, Potpie (yes, we have a warped sense of humor), and Jump. Anyway, Peck is a Black Cochin and although she doesn't look so hot here, she's going to be one pretty chicken when all of her feathers come in.

And here's Brownie, soaking up the sun and a whole lotta dirt. Turns out chickens love to not only dig in the dirt but they kind of like to wallow around in it too...must be that whole living on a farm thing. They do this funny thing with their leg...they push it far out behind them while stretching out a wing and rolling on one side. If you didn't know any better (and I didn't) you'd think they were having a heart attack. Thankfully, one of my other chicken-loving friends had warned me about this quirky behavior so there wasn't any alarm. (For any of you who know me well, you know I'm prone to being easily alarmed!)

And here are the boys enjoying their new pets...They adore spending time with the chickens and holding them and so far the chickens seem patient with being picked up. No one has been aggressively pecked yet so I think we're in good shape.

Our oldest is allergic to cats, dogs, flowers, pollen, trees, mold, just about anything with life in it so chickens have been good pets. So far we've had no evidence of him having a chicken allergy, although I suspect that if we still have chickens when he's old enough to scoop poop that he'll insist that his allergies are "acting up."

I'll be back soon with photos of the completed coop and new chicken photos...wait until you see how grown up they are! I think I saw one of them trying to hot wire the car last weekend...troublesome teenagers...

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